Off the Sidelines and into the Game: The Nurse Athlete and Self Care

Monday, 18 November 2013: 10:40 AM

David P. Hrabe, PhD, RN
College of Nursing, The Ohio State University, Columbus, OH

All too often, nurses sacrifice their health and personal happiness to care for others leaving them on the sidelines of their own lives.  Nurses tend to be as overweight or obese as the general population (Zapka, Lemon, Magner & Hale, 2009) and can be more depressed (Letvak, Ruhm & McCoy, 2012).   This presentation describes a program, the Nurse Athlete, which challenges nurses to get into the game by becoming more engaged in their overall health and relationships.  Through a series of lectures, assessments, reflective journaling and physical movement exercises, participants face the truth about their physical, emotional, mental and spiritual health to design their pathway to better self-care.  Principles of energy management and the latest nutrition and exercise science support participants’ decision-making regarding changes they wish to make to improve their health practices and promote stronger interpersonal relationships.  The results of ongoing research projects that have followed past participants’ progress will be included in this presentation.